Faith During Life’s Storms #2

Thursday, September 4, 2014

“And his disciples came to him, and awoke him, saying, Lord, save us: we perish. And he saith unto them, Why are ye fearful, O ye of little faith? Then he arose, and rebuked the winds and the sea; and there was a great calm” (Matthew 8:25,26 KJV).

Like Israel learned in today’s Scripture, we too must realize to trust the Lord Jesus Christ when “the storms of life” batter us.

Whenever attempting to understand a passage in Matthew, Mark, Luke, or John, it is very helpful to search them for parallel passages. While all four books are not verbatim—they are not meant to be 100 percent identical anyway—we can find the same account in one, two, three, or even all four books. Where one book briefly summarizes an event, another book will provide details of that same incident.

For example, we read in the context of today’s Scripture (Matthew 8:23-27) that Jesus and His disciples are in a ship, out on the Sea of Galilee. Their peaceful journey suddenly takes a “turn for the worse.” There arises a mighty storm, and the disciples panic—Jesus is sleeping peacefully as the once-tranquil waters rock the ship! Fearing shipwreck, they frantically awaken their Lord and beg Him to save them. He answers, “Why are ye fearful, O ye of little faith?”

From Matthew’s account alone, this expression cannot be fully grasped. Mark and Luke, who also recorded this account, must be consulted for enlightenment: the Holy Spirit had Matthew ignore certain details, but He chose to include them in Mark 4:35-41 and Luke 8:22-25. For example, in Mark 4:37, the great windstorm has beaten the waves against the ship, “that it was now full.” Luke 8:23 says, “and they were filled with water, and were in jeopardy.” Jesus, at the back of the ship, asleep on a pillow (Mark 4:38), is awakened. According to Mark, His disciples also asked, “Master, carest thou not that we perish?” Jesus did care that the boat was full of water, but He was still calm. Why?

Mark and Luke alone provide the key to understanding Jesus’ peaceful demeanor, and why He wanted His disciples to relax….